Kaid Benfield, Director, Sustainable Communities, Washington, DC
Traffic laws in the US (and certainly elsewhere) are pretty much a joke in my experience. Openly flouted and seldom enforced. It’s a matter of math, I guess: if at a given moment 100 million drivers are in violation of some theoretical restriction or other, and there are 100,000 officers assigned primarily to traffic enforcement (the second number may not even be that high), the odds of getting away with a violation are roughly 999 to 1.
This is why drivers seem to be incensed that there are now cameras that can detect speeding and stoplight violations. It increases their odds of getting caught. I say, if you don’t like the speed limit, lobby to change it; otherwise obey the law of the land.
No law is more openly flaunted or more seldom enforced than the ban in many states on using hand-held phones for talking and texting while driving. Reporting data from a recent survey by insurance giant Allstate, I was frankly shocked to discover that a strong majority of respondents 44 and under reported that they text while driving. (I’m sure those 45 and older would, too, if they knew how.) WTF, people?
One of my readers sent me this link to a hilarious short video on the subject that he made. Enjoy and, especially this holiday weekend, please heed:
Publication of the blog will be reduced (but not stopped) while I am on vacation, until after Labor Day.
Kaid Benfield writes (almost) daily about community, development, and the environment. For more posts, see his blog’s home page.
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